If you’re considering relocating or expanding an industrial operation, one of the first things you need to know is how your plant will be powered. And when you talk to us at Entergy, you’ll have four critical questions:
Though every company’s priorities shift with changes in the economy or business strategy, these top concerns have remained the same over my 32-year career working with Entergy customers. And I’m happy I can answer YES to each of these questions.
My experiences across Southeast Texas mirror Entergy’s broader strategy of being prepared to power the growth of new and existing industrial customers across Entergy’s four-state region. And a great example of this forward-looking strategy is Entergy’s investment of nearly $1.6 billion in new infrastructure and power grid updates in Southeast Texas to power the future.
In this short space, I’ll elaborate a little more on why we can say YES.
Entergy Texas is engaged in an aggressive modernization of our transmission and distribution systems, along with a new power generation facility. This is how the nearly $1.6 billion capital investment for 2017-2019 is being allocated: Transmission $505 million, Distribution $360 million, Generation $640 million and other $95 million – including the addition of 200 miles of new transmission lines and 15 new substations over the next 10 years. We’ve also filed to amend our certificate of convenience and necessity in Texas to build a new 993-megawatt combined cycle gas turbine in the Montgomery County, Texas area. This cornerstone investment in power generation will help keep customer costs low by saving our customers $1.7 billion dollars over 30 years.
Entergy is continuously evaluating our transmission system and improving our system to meet the reliability needs of Southeast Texas. This includes working with the Midcontinent Independent System Operator to plan for the growth of our region and continuously identify new projects to improve reliability and reduce congestion on the grid.
I’m proud to say that in 2017, the Edison Electric Institute, the association that represents all U.S. investor-owned electric companies, awarded Entergy both the Emergency Recovery Award and the Emergency Assistance Award. These awards recognized our employees’ expertise in restoring power to customers affected by major outages and helping other utilities recover from devastation caused by Hurricane Matthew. This is the 19th year in a row we’ve received a national storm restoration award, and we’re the only utility company to have won either or both every year since the Edison Electric Institute’s awards began in 1998.
Entergy is one of the only regulated utilities in the U.S. to incorporate within our economic development organization a dedicated project management group geared to provide exclusive support for our new or expanding large industrial customers.
Our Large Project and Technical Services group brings together a team of Entergy experts focused on large industrial transmission projects from initial scoping and estimating through design and construction activities. This group includes certified project managers with decades of large project experience. With our early collaboration and management approach, we have a track record of completing projects on schedule and often in advance of the schedule. We aim for early completion of projects to mitigate risks related to scheduling and support our customers’ positive financial investment results.
Entergy’s large industrial customers enjoy kilowatt hour costs well below national and regional averages. Our membership in Midcontinent Independent System Operator gives us access to a larger power market to better serve our customers, hold costs down and increase reliability.
As part of our LP&TS management process, we develop customized service alternatives to help hold construction and operational costs down. Project execution teams work to ensure that we come in on – or often under – budget.
In addition to addressing electrical power needs, Entergy further extends our commitment to our customers by supporting people power. To build the talent pipeline in Texas, Entergy is contributing $500,000 to local workforce development training programs. Another $97,293 will come from the Texas Workforce Commission as a matching grant through the Texas Industry Partnership program. The grants this year are only the first step in Entergy’s $5 million, five-year workforce development initiative across our four-state service area.
While YES is the simple answer to the four key questions about our readiness to serve large industrial customers, Entergy is focused on the complexity of each industrial project. That’s why our LP&TS group customizes and expedites our attention to these projects, front-loading the process with our best thinking from a team of experts who manage the project from inception through completion. To get the most benefit from these services, call on us as early as possible in your planning process and find out how we can say YES to powering your success.
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